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ARRL Letter


The ARRL Letter
Vol. 28, No. 7
February 20, 2009


* + Hams in Australia Assist with Massive Bushfires 
* + Hams Can Still Help with Digital TV (DTV) Conversion 
* + "The Doctor Is IN" the ARRL Letter 
* + World Amateur Radio Day to Recognize Amateur Radio's Role in
Disaster Communications 
* + John Kanzius, K3TUP (SK) 
* + Dieter Schliemann, KX4Y (SK) 
*  Solar Update 
      This Week on the Radio 
      ARRL Continuing Education Course Registration 
    + Get Ready for the ARRL International DX CW Contest this Weekend 

+Available on ARRL Audio News <> 

==>Delivery problems: First see FAQ
<>, then e-mail
==>Editorial questions or comments only: S. Khrystyne Keane, K1SFA


In the Australian state of Victoria, Amateur Radio operators have been
activated to provide communications links into towns that have had their
normal communications destroyed by the bushfires that have decimated the
state. Members of the Wireless Institute Civil Emergency Network in
Victoria (WICEN (Vic)) <> -- Australia's
version of ARES -- were activated on February 8, with members being
deployed to areas with loss of power and other facilities.

According to the Wireless Institute of Australia (WIA)
<> -- that country's IARU Member-Society --
authorities and resources in Victoria have been "stretched to the
limit." WICEN has been on high alert since the fires started on January
28. On February 11, WICEN (Vic) Secretary Mark Dods, VK3XMU, said, "It
now appears that WICEN's role in this emergency is going to be a long
hard marathon over an extended period."

The fires -- some of which are believed to have been deliberately set,
while at least one fire began due to a lightning strike -- have so far
claimed 201 lives, including one firefighter; local police say they do
not expect the death toll to go much higher. Covering more than 1100
square miles, the fires have destroyed more than 1800 homes; officials
estimate at least 7500 people are now homeless due to the fires.
Victoria Premier John Brumby, in speaking about the bushfires, said,
"Out there, it is hell on earth"

On February 12, Dods said that "WICEN was given the task of establishing
a link between Narbethong and the Municipal Emergency Coordination
Centre in Alexandra. Initially, the Narbethong-Alexandra link will be on
HF. The two WICEN operators that were on standby for deployment to
Buxton have been dispatched to Alexandra to join a column that will be
moving down the Maroondah Highway to Narbethong this afternoon. An extra
WICEN operator is being deployed to the Alexandra MECC to assist the
operator already there with expected extra traffic from Narbethong Three
WICEN operators are now working 8 hour shifts at the Alexandra Incident
Command Centre (ICC), operating CFA/DSE radios. We will be providing
operators for this task until further notice."

Dods said hams would make "temporary repairs" to VK3RTN, the 6 meter
repeater on Mt Gordon that suffered damage during the fire, making it
usable until they can get and install a new repeater. The Mt Gordon
repeater is being used as a link between Alexandra and Narbethong. The
WICEN station in Narbethong closed Saturday, February 14. "The Alexandra
WICEN station will continue to operate after the closure of Narbethong,"
Dods said. "Their role includes guiding relief operators into the town,
maintaining an HF link to Melbourne and a listening watch. Operators in
the Alexandra ICC have reported increased radio traffic overnight and
emphasised the need for concise, prompt and accurate handling of the
traffic despite the sometimes tense environment."

Dods recounted that there was what he called a "flurry of activity" on
the evening of February 14: "WICEN received a request from DSE
[Department of Sustainability and Environment] to provide operators at
Woori Yallock ICC. We were asked to cover the night shift last night and
the next four nights. Being a Saturday night, it was difficult to
contact operators with many being not at home, and others having their
mobile phones diverted to voice mail. Two operators agreed to be
deployed at short notice, however. They travelled to Woori Yallock only
to find that there had been an administrative foul-up and that they were
not required. Those operators have returned home with my thanks and
apologies. This false start at Woori Yallock does give us a 'heads up'
that DSE and CFA [Country Fire Authority] resources may be beginning to
stretch thin, and lead to more ICC deployments."

On February 17, Dods said that two WICEN operators will be going to
"McAdam's Hill, east of Lake Mountain, to provide health and welfare
communications for the firefighters at a Base Camp being set up there.
Initially, the primary operating frequency will be 3.6 MHz, so there may
well be a need for stations monitoring that frequency to relay traffic.
Deployment of a portable 2m repeater to support the McAdam's Hill
station is under consideration."

The WICEN HF Net continues to operate on 3.6 MHz at 1000 and 2130 hours
(UTC + 11) daily. "As well as keeping a check on the welfare of
operators in the field, the Net is being used to pass updated activation
information, and also for amateurs in remote areas of the state to check
their communications," Dods said. "It is reassuring to hear stations
from all over the state and interstate on the Net, demonstrating that we
can, if necessary, establish communications independent of hilltop
infrastructure. It has been very handy to have other amateurs monitoring
3.6 MHz when they can to relay when fading occurs. Many thanks to those
operators who have relayed traffic so far."

Dennis Dura, K2DCD, ARRL Emergency Preparedness and Response Manager
said: "The work the Australian hams have been doing and the issues WICEN
have been facing are not unlike what ARES personnel encounter here. The
long hours and duration of the disaster response and the dwindling
availability of amateur volunteers take a toll. Yet Amateur Radio still
is able to complete the mission. The flexibility we bring is key to
meeting the emergency communications needs of those the amateur
community serves. Our hearts go out to all those that have lost loved
ones and whose lives have been forever changed by these fires. Our
colleagues in WICEN make the Amateur Radio community proud in the work
they are performing in these very difficult conditions."


Even though the mandatory conversion date for television stations to
switch from analog signals to digital has been delayed by four months
<>, hams
are still assisting the FCC and their communities by providing technical
support to those who need assistance
<>. Although many TV
stations won't turn off their analog signals until the new deadline, the
law allows stations to apply to switch on the original date -- February
17 -- or any time before June 12.

According to the FCC, there are nearly 1800 full-power televisions
stations in the US. Of these, the FCC said that "220 will have
terminated their analog signals before Tuesday [February 17] and another
421 will terminate their analog signals on Tuesday [February 17] before
11:59 PM, for a total of 641 stations, or about 36 percent of all
full-power stations nationwide." The FCC has posted a list of stations
making the conversion on or before February 17 on their Web site

ARRL Media and Public Relations Manager Allen Pitts, W1AGP, said he has
been getting e-mails and phone calls from Amateur Radio operators
concerning the digital TV conversion, now set to take place on Friday,
June 12. "People are asking what's happening with the DTV conversion --
especially now that it's been delayed -- and wondering what we as hams
can do to help," he said. "There has been considerable confusion
concerning the extension of the date, but the role of Amateur Radio is
simply to be helpful to the people in our communities."

Pitts advises those hams that are helping to provide technical
educational assistance keep in mind the following troubleshooting
pointers, provided by the FCC:

* Check Your Connections
Check that your digital-to-analog converter box (or digital television)
is connected properly. Make sure that your antenna is connected to the
antenna input of your digital-to-analog converter box (or digital
television). If you are using a digital-to-analog converter box, ensure
that the antenna output of the converter box is connected to the antenna
input of your analog TV. If you are unsure of the proper connections,
refer to your owners manual.

Make sure that your components are plugged in and turned on.
If using a digital-to-analog converter box, tune your analog TV to
channel 3. You should see a set-up menu or picture on your screen. If
you do not see this, re-check your connections.

* Perform a Channel Scan
Digital-to-analog converter boxes (and digital televisions) have a
button -- usually on the remote control -- that is labeled "Set-up" or
"Menu" or some similar term. Press that button to access the set-up
menu. Using the directional arrow buttons on your remote, scroll to the
option that allows you to perform a "channel scan." The channel scan
will search for digital broadcast channels that are available in your
area. If you are unsure how to do a channel scan, please refer to the
owners manual for your converter box or digital television (whichever

Once the channel scan is complete, you will be able to tune to the
digital channels received by your antenna.

* Adjust Your Antenna
As many hams know, small adjustments to an antenna can make a big
difference; digital TV is no exception. If you have an indoor antenna,
try elevating it and moving it closer to an exterior wall of your home.
After adjusting your antenna, perform another channel scan to see if
your reception has improved.

While adjusting your antenna, it may be helpful to access the "Signal
strength meter" on your converter box or digital television set to
determine whether your adjustments are improving the signals' strength.
You can probably find your signal strength meter via the "Menu" function
on your remote control, and your owners manual will provide detailed
information on how to perform this function. Remember to do another
channel scan after you have adjusted your antenna.

Make sure that you are using an antenna that covers both the UHF and VHF
bands and that is connected properly (depending on what channels are in
use in your area).

Late last year, the FCC requested assistance from the ARRL in providing
educational support to local communities regarding the digital TV

"I really appreciate the willingness of the ARRL to actively participate
in helping Americans with the transition to DTV and your helpful
suggestions," said George Dillon, FCC Deputy Bureau Chief for Field
Operations (now retired). "The DTV transition will be an historic moment
in the evolution of TV. Broadcast television stations can offer viewers
improved picture and sound quality and new programming choices.
All-digital broadcasting also will allow [the FCC] to significantly
improve public safety communications and will usher in a new era of
advanced wireless services such as the widespread deployment of wireless
broadband. Our goal is to engage the amateur community on a cooperative
basis to help with the DTV outreach and to educate consumers."

The FCC said that it is seeking to ensure that even where all or most
stations in a market are terminating analog service, consumers who are
unprepared for the switch will continue to have access to critical local
news and emergency information. In a statement released by the FCC, the
Commission "examined each market in which stations planned to end analog
service to try to ensure that at least one affiliate of the four major
networks -- ABC, CBS, Fox and NBC -- would continue broadcasting in
analog after February 17. Many had such a station, but in those
instances in which there would be no top-four affiliate remaining in a
market, the FCC attempted to ensure that analog local news and emergency
information would remain available -- generally through what is being
called 'enhanced analog nightlight' service. Under 'enhanced analog
nightlight,' the top-four affiliates must keep at least one analog
signal on the air to provide programming that includes, at a minimum,
local news and emergency information"

FCC Acting Chairman Michael Copps said that the Commission is "trying to
make the best of a difficult situation. While this staggered transition
is confusing and disruptive for some consumers, the confusion and
disruption would have been far worse had we gone ahead with a nationwide
transition on [February 17]."

For more information on the conversion to digital television, please see
the DTV Conversion Web site <>. 


This week, ARRL Letter readers are in luck! The ARRL's very own Doctor,
author of the popular QST column "The Doctor Is IN," answers a question
from his mailbag:

Scott McCann, W3MEO, of Queenstown, Maryland, asks: I am fairly new to
SSB and CW on VHF and was surprised during the September ARRL VHF
contest to have worked W2SZ, the RPI Amateur Radio Club station on Mt
Greylock in Massachusetts. I was running 2 W CW to a homebrew four
element beam 20 feet off the ground. The boys on the mountain were
running a lot bigger station than I was. 

This station was well over the horizon. I wonder what propagation mode
supports this beyond line-of-sight (LOS) communication? I worked several
other stations that were also well over the horizon. 

The Doctor Answers -- The propagation mode is most likely troposcatter,
in which VHF signals are scattered by the troposphere, the lowest region
of our atmosphere extending about 7 miles to the border with the
stratosphere. Troposcatter is in common use by the military and some
commercial users for paths up to a few hundred miles -- generally using
high power and high gain antennas. 

Troposcatter is also the mode that results in a commonly occurring type
of long distance TV transmission. W2SZ -- the Amateur Radio club at
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in New York -- uses big power and
antennas from a fantastic location, making this mode a common
occurrence. You can find out more about troposcatter and the other
propagation modes supported by the troposphere at this Web site

Do you have a question or a problem? Send your questions via e-mail
<>;; or to "The Doctor," ARRL, 225 Main St, Newington, CT
06111 (no phone calls, please). Look for "The Doctor Is IN" every month
in QST, the official journal of the ARRL.


Each year on April 18, radio amateurs celebrate World Amateur Radio Day.
On that day in 1925, 84 years ago, the International Amateur Radio Union
(IARU) was founded <>. In 2009, the theme of the
event is Amateur Radio: Your Resource in Disaster and Emergency

"It is not by coincidence that last year's meeting of the IARU
Administrative Council (AC)
<> chose this
subject at this time," said IARU International Coordinator for Emergency
Communication Hans Zimmermann, F5VKP/HB9AQS. "While the Amateur Radio
Service has traditionally made its contributions to emergency and
disaster response ever since its very beginnings almost 100 years ago,
this role has gained a lot of importance just in the recent past."

Citing the fact that natural, as well as manmade disasters are on the
rise, Zimmermann pointed out that today's modern communication
technologies are "increasingly complex, infrastructure-dependent and
therefore also increasingly vulnerable. The Amateur Radio Service puts
two equally valuable assets at its disposal for emergency and disaster
prevention, preparedness and response: A large number of very flexible
and mostly infrastructure-independent, local, national, regional and
global networks, and a large number of skilled operators, who know how
to communicate with often very limited means and to establish
communications even under the most difficult circumstances."

Zimmermann said that the tools available to Amateur Radio operators
"range from the most robust means such as battery-operated stations
operating in Morse code, to links through Amateur Radio satellites and
interconnectivity with the Internet, in voice, text, image and data
modes. They range from local VHF networks of fixed, mobile and portable
stations to shortwave networks that span the globe. All these networks
are operated on a daily basis by men and women who are thoroughly
familiar with their technology and their intricacies."

"Telecommunications have become a commodity that society takes for
granted," Zimmermann stated, adding that "the sudden loss of that
service is often felt in a similar way to the loss of shelter, food and
medical support. When disasters occur in regions that do not have good
coverage by public networks -- or when existing communications
infrastructures have just been disrupted or destroyed by such events --
the Amateur Radio Service comes to the rescue. Amateur Radio operators
provide communications for the rescuers and relief workers and their
organizations and they help to provide communications for those affected
by a disaster."

Zimmermann continued: "In fact, contributions to emergency and disaster
relief are a major argument for the preservation and the extension of
the privileges the Amateur Radio Service enjoys in international and
national regulations. This is one of the reasons why more and more
Amateur Radio operators -- through their clubs and their national
societies -- prepare very seriously for their role in emergencies;
however, their skills can be put to use only if they are known by other
first responders. Effective response to emergencies can only occur with
the work of volunteers in all the various fields, from search and rescue
to medical assistance and those who can provide food and shelter.
Communication skills are a new, but equally vital commodity."


John Kanzius, K3TUP, of Erie, Pennsylvania, passed away February 18 in
Florida from pneumonia. He was 64. Kanzius was best known for his
research into finding a cure for cancer using radio waves, specifically
13.56 MHz.

In 1966 at age 22, Kanzius came to Erie, Pennsylvania to work for JET
Broadcasting. After 24 years as a broadcast engineer, he was appointed
vice president and general manager of the company in 1980. After
retiring, Kanzius was diagnosed with leukemia in 2002. He summarized his
chemotherapy in a February 2008 article in QST as "Hoping we kill the
cancer before we kill the
person"<;pub=qst>. In
October 2003 -- thinking there had to be a better treatment -- Kanzius
had the idea to kill the cancer cell with radio waves, not a new idea.
But Kanzius went a bit further: Instead of using needles, as was
currently used, why not "trick" the cancer cells into absorbing a metal
target -- sent by RF -- into the inside of the cancer cells, leaving the
healthy cells alone?

In 2005, Kanzius teamed up with cancer researchers at M. D. Anderson
(part of the University of Texas health system in Houston) and Rice
University (also in Houston). Using nanoparticles -- metallic objects
measured in billionths of an inch -- heated by RF using a machine that
Kanzius invented, the researchers were impressed: "The research
scientists at Rice were stunned to see that my device could heat
nanoparticles at the 13.56 MHz frequency," Kanzius said.

Kanzius credited his father for his inspiration: "Trying to build an
array that would heat particles one billionth of a meter in length was
challenging. But building equipment all of my life was inspired by my
dad, W3NRE, who was licensed in 1934."

Kanzius told ARRL Media and Public Relations Manager Allen Pitts, W1AGP,
that if it were not for his Amateur Radio background, "and all the days
of experimentation to improve my station, this new procedure for
treating cancer, which continues to show such promising results, would
probably not be on the cutting edge at the largest cancer center in the
world [M. D. Anderson]."

But Kanzius did more than just try to find a cure for cancer. In 1991,
he was Top of Honor Roll in the ARRL DXCC program; at his death, he had
347 countries confirmed. In the March/April 1987 issue of NCJ, Tim
Duffy, K3LR, described K3TUP as "a relatively new contest call," but
said Kanzius had been DXing for many years: "As he has caught the
contest bug, John has taken a station which was designed for busting DX
pileups and converted it over to have the flexibility and brute force
required to compete in Multi-Single contesting." Duffy described the
station as sitting "situated on a high ridge that overlooks Lake Erie.
The station is well secluded from city-type radio noise and the rural
setting allows John to run several temporary beverages for low band
receiving." Both Duffy and Randy Thompson, K5ZD, have operated from
Kanzius's station.

Pitts recalled that in 2007, he received an e-mail from a ham, asking if
he was aware of the research Kanzius was attempting: "I looked at the
attached video clip and I was skeptical. But I became more curious about
this kitchen table tinkerer-ham and investigated the claims. I learned
two major things: First, this was not a harebrained scheme -- it really
worked (!), and -- even more important for me -- John Kanzius was a true
gentleman. Bright, polite and enthusiastic without being overbearing, I
liked him. Over the next months as I wrote the QST article about his
work, I came to know him and his true desire to help other cancer
victims. Since then, we stayed in touch by phone and e-mail. I enjoyed
his delight as each step in the process of bringing his machine and
concept to human use was proven by M. D. Anderson and other cancer
research facilities. Some people just make your world better by being
there. John was one of those people. Though I never met him in person,
it was always good to hear from him and I enjoyed the friendship. Losing
him makes the world a little colder. I will miss him."

Kanzius is survived by his wife Marianne, two daughters -- Sherry
Kanzius and Toni Palmer -- and two grandchildren. Calling hours are
Sunday, February 22 from 2-5 PM and 7-9 PM at the Duskas-Martin Funeral
Home <>, 4216 Sterrettania Rd,
Erie, Pennsylvania. A funeral service is planned for 10:30 AM on Monday,
February 23 at the Episcopal Cathedral of St Paul
<>, also in Erie. Memorial
contributions may be made to the John Kaznius Research Fund
<>, Palace Business Center, 915
State St, Erie, PA 16501.


Dieter Schliemann, KX4Y, of Scottsboro, Alabama, passed away February 9
after a battle with cancer. He was 68. According to Amateur Radio on the
International Space Station (ARISS) <>
International Chairman Frank H. Bauer, KA3HDO, Schliemann was
instrumental in leading and supporting many key activities in AMSAT
<> and on the ARISS program. "Those that knew Dieter
recognized that he was a 'class act,'" Bauer said, "a great gentleman
and colleague who will be sorely missed by all."

Schliemann, an ARRL Life Member, was involved with ARISS, leading the
school contact IRLP/EchoLink initiative. Through this Amateur Radio VOIP
system, Bauer said Schliemann and his team "substantially extended our
reach of the school contacts. And through his efforts, tens of thousands
of school students and ham radio operators, worldwide, could listen to
other school contacts, enhancing education and giving all a better
understanding of what it is like to live and work on ISS. Dieter's
diplomacy, teambuilding skills and attention to the details were
impeccable and were well respected within the team. He rose to the
challenge when I asked him to lead the IRLP/EchoLink team. At the time,
there were strong, divergent opinions on the use of IRLP and EchoLink on
ARISS. He singlehandedly developed a cohesive team that is producing
great results and is enjoying working together."

Bauer said that Schliemann had been fighting cancer for a few years: "A
month ago, all of us thought he was on the road to recovery.
Unfortunately, that did not come to pass. Through it all, Dieter
remained the gentle, caring person that we all have grown to love.
During his illness, he remained dedicated to his AMSAT and ARISS causes
and responsibilities. When he received the surprising news from the
doctors that he had only two weeks to live and despite being weak from a
long hospitalization, Dieter got on e-mail and worked on a transition
plan to ensure that IRLP/EchoLink capabilities on ARISS continues. What
a great, compassionate, loving human being."

Rosalie White, K1STO, fondly remembered Schliemann. "As team members
reported on what a great person Dieter was, and the ways he had helped
ARISS, more and more came to light regarding so many things he had
accomplished without many others knowing," she said. "He shunned the
spotlight, yet he quietly took the initiative, never shying away from
solving problems. The ARISS Team will miss Dieter terribly -- a
wonderful friend and dedicated volunteer."


Tad "Love comforteth like sunshine after rain" Cook, K7RA, this week
reports: We saw a sunspot on February 11-13, then it was gone. Typical
of sunspots recently, it was only seen briefly; this one was a relic of
Solar Cycle 23, according to its magnetic signature. For at least a
couple of years now, we've been expecting Solar Cycle 23 to bottom out
and new Solar Cycle 24 spots to emerge, but the sunspot minimum drags
on. Most projections are based on past cycle activity, so according to
the timing of past solar minimums, we keep thinking surely soon there
will be an explosion of new solar activity, but the Sun seems to tease
us. Sunspot numbers for February 12-18 were 11, 11, 0, 0, 0, 0 and 0
with a mean of 3.1. The 10.7 cm flux was 69.7, 70.1, 70.1, 69.6, 69.5,
70.6 and 69.8 with a mean of 69.9. The estimated planetary A indices
were 4, 3, 14, 10, 3, 1 and 2 with a mean of 5.3. The estimated
mid-latitude A indices were 1, 2, 9, 6, 2, 1 and 1 with a mean of 3.1.
For more information concerning radio propagation, visit the ARRL
Technical Information Service Propagation page
<>. To read this week's
Solar Report in its entirety, check out the W1AW Propagation Bulletin
page <>. This week's "Tad Cookism" brought
to you by William Shakespeare's "Venus and Adonis"



* This Week on the Radio: This week, the ARRL International DX Contest
(CW) is on February 21-22. The AM QSO Party and the REF Contest are also
February 21-22. Next week, the Russian WW PSK Contest is on February
27-28. Look for the UBA Contest (CW), Mississippi QSO Party, North
American QSO Party (RTTY), CQ WW 160 Meter Contest (SSB) and the CQC
Winter QSO Party to be on the air February 28-March 1. The High Speed CW
Contest is March 1. The North Carolina QSO Party and DARC 10 Meter
Digital "Corona" are both March 1-2. All dates, unless otherwise stated,
are UTC. See the ARRL Contest Branch page
<>, the ARRL Contest Update
<> and the WA7BNM Contest Calendar
<> for more info. Looking
for a Special Event station? Be sure to check out the ARRL Special Event
Station Web page <>. 

* ARRL Continuing Education Course Registration: Registration remains
open through Sunday March 8, 2009 for these online course sessions
beginning on Friday, March 20, 2009: Amateur Radio Emergency
Communications Level 2, Antenna Modeling, and Radio Frequency
Propagation. Each online course has been developed in segments --
learning units with objectives, informative text, student activities and
quizzes. Courses are interactive, and some include direct communications
with a Mentor/Instructor. Students register for a particular session
that may be 8, 12 or 16 weeks (depending on the course) and they may
access the course at any time of day during the course period,
completing lessons and activities at times convenient for their personal
schedule. Mentors assist students by answering questions, reviewing
assignments and activities, as well as providing helpful feedback.
Interaction with mentors is conducted through e-mail; there is no
appointed time the student must be present -- allowing complete
flexibility for the student to work when and where it is convenient. To
learn more, visit the CCE Course Listing page
<> or contact the Continuing Education
Program Coordinator <>;.

* Get Ready for the ARRL International DX CW Contest this Weekend: This
weekend will be a busy one for CW operators as the 2009 ARRL
International CW DX Contest takes center stage. First started in 1929 as
the ARRL International Relay Party, the ARRL DX CW Contest is the
longest running contest in Amateur Radio. Stations from all around the
world -- from Australia to Zimbabwe -- should be active for this great
event that takes place on 160-10 meters (no contest QSOs are permitted
on 12, 17, 30 or 60 meters). Stations in the US and Canada work only DX
stations (Alaska and Hawaii are considered DX for this contest), and DX
stations only work the US and Canada. DX stations will be trying to make
as many QSOs with all US states and Canadian provinces as they can. The
contest exchange is simple -- US and Canadian stations send a signal
report and their state or province, while DX stations send a signal
report and the amount of power with which they are transmitting. The
ARRL International CW DX Contest runs from 0000 UTC Saturday, February
21 through 2359 UTC Sunday, February 22, 2009. Complete rules and forms
can be found on the ARRL Contest Web site
<>. Electronic logs
should be e-mailed <>;; paper logs can be sent to ARRL DX CW
Contest, 225 Main St, Newington, CT 06111. Logs sent via postal mail
must be postmarked no later than 2359 UTC Monday, March 23, 2009.

The ARRL Letter is published Fridays, 50 times each year, by the
American Radio Relay League: ARRL--the national association for Amateur
Radio, 225 Main St, Newington, CT 06111; tel 860-594-0200; fax
860-594-0259; <>. Joel Harrison, W5ZN, President.

The ARRL Letter offers a weekly e-mail digest of essential and general
news of interest to active radio amateurs. Visit the ARRL Web site
<> for the latest Amateur Radio news and news
updates. The ARRL Web site <> also offers
informative features and columns. ARRL Audio News
<> is a weekly "ham radio newscast"
compiled and edited from The ARRL Letter. It's also available as a
podcast from our Web site.

Material from The ARRL Letter may be republished or reproduced in whole
or in part in any form without additional permission. Credit must be
given to The ARRL Letter/American Radio Relay League.

==>Delivery problems (ARRL member direct delivery only!):
==>Editorial questions or comments: S. Khrystyne Keane, K1SFA,
==>ARRL News on the Web: <>
==>ARRL Audio News: <> or call

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The ARRL Letter

The ARRL Letter offers a weekly summary of essential news of interest to active amateurs that is available in advance of publication in QST, our official journal. The ARRL Letter strives to be timely, accurate, concise and readable.

Much of the ARRL Letter content is also available in audio form in ARRL Audio News.

Material from The ARRL Letter may be republished or reproduced in whole or in part in any form without additional permission. Credit must be given to The ARRL Letter and The American Radio Relay League.

Back issues published since 2000 are available on this page. If you wish to subscribe via e-mail, simply log on to the ARRL Web site, click on Edit Your Profile at the top, then click on Edit Email Subscriptions. Check the box next to The ARRL email newsletter, the ARRL Letter and you will receive each weekly issue in HTML format. You can unsubscribe at any time.

Delivery problems (ARRL member direct delivery only!):

Editorial questions or comments: John E. Ross, KD8IDJ, at


The ARRL E-Letter e-mail is also available in plain-text version:

Outlook Express

1. From the Inbox view, select the Tools menu and the Options selection.

2. Click the Read tab

3. Check the Read All Messages In Plain Text box.  When you open the e-mail, it will be in plain text without images. Other e-mail programs may be able to make a Mail Rule for e-mail received from the address so that the plain-text-only display is selected automatically.

Outlook 2007

Use the same procedure as for Outlook Express, although the global option is under "Tools/Trust Center/E-mail Security".


Use the menu item "View/Message Body As/Plain Text" or "View/Message Source" options.

OS X Mail (Mac)

Use the "View/Message/Plain Text Alternative" menu item.


Use the "Message text garbled?" link in the drop-down menu at the upper right of the displayed message block. pine, alpine Set "prefer-plain-text" in your ~/.pinerc configuration file: feature-list=..., prefer-plain-text, ...


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